Wicked Wednesday — I’m A Fool for These Classic Female and Male Actors

I love classic movies and the glamour of the stars in them. Wickeds, who are your favorite female and male actors? What is it about them that makes them stand out?

Edith: Meryl Streep. She’s gracious and smart, can adopt any accent in the world and make it sound real, and brings life to her roles. I fell for Omar Sharif way back in Dr. Zhivago. I would watch him in anything.


Liz: I’ve always been a fan of Julia Roberts, from way back in the Mystic Pizza and Pretty Woman days. She brings such life and joy to all of her roles, and she seems like a really cool person in real life, too. And my other favorite is Morgan Freeman. I could watch him all day long. He has such a calming presence.

Sherry: I adore Audrey Hepburn. One of my favorite movies is Funny Face — ah, the clothes in that movie. Audrey could do funny, serious, tragic — she was multi-talented and a fabulous human being. One of my favorite actors is Rod Taylor who died in 2015. I fell in love with him when I was a teenager. He is probably best known for his roll in The Birds. But he also made two movies with Doris Day (another favorite).

Jessie: I love Emma Thompson and Harvey Keitel. She  plays such an interesting range of characters I can root for and in movies I end up loving like Love Actually and Nannie McPhee. And Harvey Keitel is always a pleasure to watch. I loved him in Pulp Fiction, Reservoir Dogs and in the American version of Life on Mars.

Julie: What a fun topic! Fred Astaire has been my favorite movie star since I was about twelve, read Daddy Long Legs, begged to stay up and watch the movie, and saw him dance. He’s a little old for Leslie Caron in retrospect, but still. I discovered Fred and Ginger movies shortly thereafter, and still love him. BTW, Bandwagon is probably my favorite movie of all time. For women, I’m going to go classic for that too. Katharine Hepburn was the bomb. Philadelphia Story, Holiday, A Lion in Winter, Desk Set, Adam’s Rib. . . the list goes on and on. Another thing about them both? Boy, did they have style.

Barb: For me, the trio of Cary Grant, Jimmy Stewart and Katharine Hepburn in The Philadelphia Story can never be beat, though Jack Lemmon, Tony Curtis and Marilyn Monroe in Some Like It Hot give them a good run for their money.

Readers: Who are your favorites?

33 Thoughts

  1. Helen Mirren and Judi Dench..also Conchata Ferrell. .I loved Fred Astaire in On the Beach! and Robert Guillaume.

  2. Paul Newman and Robert Redford in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Apart from the fact that they were both gorgeous to look at, I loved that they played optimistic losers in the movie. I’ll add that I idolized Diana Rigg as Emma Peel in the television version of The Avengers. I was lucky enough to see her in a stage performance in London, years ago.

    1. That was a fantastic movie. I only saw a couple of episodes of The Avengers when it was on. Diana Rigg is amazing. I wonder if I could watch those somewhere now.

  3. Love them all! I will add Walter Pigeon to the list. I really like older movies!

  4. So hard to pick.

    I’m another Audrey Hepburn fan. She was so poised in all her movies, went on to do great things, and was really intelligent to boot.

    For guys, it would have to be a toss up between Robert Redford and Paul Newman. Fortunately they made a couple movies together so I don’t have to choose. 🙂

  5. I don’t know that I’ve watched enough of the classic actors and actresses to have a favorite from the movies. Don’t throw things at me. I’m sorry.

    Now if we were looking at classic TV actresses, Lucille Ball would win for me hands down. That woman makes great comedy look effortless, and she was never afraid of looking ridiculous to get a laugh. In fact, she encouraged it.

    1. I know you know some classic Disney movies — they’ve had some great actors and actresses! I’m thinking of the original Parent Trap and Swiss Family Robinson. But Lucille Ball is amazing!

      1. It’s been so long since I watched some of those movies…. Although I do like Haley Mills and Dean Jones from some of those classic Disney movies.

      1. Desi put such a huge stamp on the way we watch TV to this day that very few people know about. Not to mention that the original Star Trek was a DesiLu production.

        I actually read the memoir of one of the writers for the show (called Laughing with Lucy). She credited the show’s success to the fact that as long as it got laughs, Desi (as producer) would pay for it and Lucy would do it. That gave them great freedom as writers to go for it. And we are still laughing at that show how many decades later?

  6. Rod Taylor – be still my heart! I got my crush on him when I saw him in the movie Sunday in New York with Jane Fonda. I love Cary Grant in The Philadelphia Story and of course, Grace Kelly was wonderful in that and in Rear Window.

  7. Julie, I have struggled with who I loved best, Fred Astaire or Gene Kelly. I finally came to the conclusions that they were each had their own a different style of dancing and were both far superior than other male dancers. Actors, I loved Burt Lancaster, the sexiest man ever and Cary Grant, the coolest actor ever. Bette Davis and Katherine Hepburn were my favorite actresses from Hollywood’s golden era.

  8. For me Helen Mirren and Judy Dench for the woman. The male actor is a bit harder for me. I loved Gene Kelly, Jimmy Stewart and all of those actors. I think a modern actor would have to be the Hemsworth that is Thor – he is funny and a good actor at the same time Maybe there are others out there, but I just do not know them. And just because he is so nice and good looking, I have to go with Jason Momoa, lol

  9. My favorite male actors are Sir Patrick Stewart and Val Kilmer. My favorite actresses have to be Dame Judy Dench and Mayim Bialik. My decisions are not only based on performance but also on who they are in reality. 🤓

  10. Definitely Jimmy Stewart (with Gregory Peck a very close second). I’ve seen nearly every movie Jimmy Stewart made, and I loved when he’d go on Johnny Carson – he wrote poems to his wife and was a kind and funny manz Peck starred in my very favorite movie of all time – To Kill a Mockingbird.

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